Open Britain is leading the fight against a hard, destructive Brexit.
The Government have made a choice. This was not an inevitability. They have made political decisions to take the hardest of hard lines on immigration and the European Court of Justice; to take us out of the Single Market and the Customs Union while pretending we can enjoy the ‘exact same benefits’; to squander good will among EU leaders and instead put all our eggs in the basket of a special relationship with Donald Trump. The Government have opted for a hard Brexit, with no mandate to do so.
Open Britain believe that by letting immigration policy dictate economic policy, the Government are running the risk of damaging our economy for generations to come and of leaving people poorer. We will continue to hold them to account for the decisions they have taken and Leave campaigners for the promises they made.
There is still a lot to fight for. People voted to leave the EU but not to be poorer, weaker or more isolated. Open Britain will fight against the hard, destructive and potentially chaotic Brexit path the Government has chosen.
Open Britain believe we are stronger with Europe. We will continue to campaign for a close relationship with Europe and for the Government to change its hard Brexit course.
Open Britain is campaigning for Britain to be open and inclusive, open for business, open to trade and investment, open to talent and hard work, open to Europe and to the world. Open Britain believe the best deal in the negotiations would be one which protects our prosperity, people, and partnerships across the continent. Hard Brexit puts these all at risk.
Protect our prosperity by highlighting the benefits of Single Market and the Customs Union and campaigning against defaulting to World Trade Organisation rules.
Protect people by supporting Europe-wide reform of the free movement of labour works and by ensuring the rights of EU nationals in the UK and Brits in the EU are fully guaranteed.
Protect our partnerships by working closely with Europe on security, science and the environment; and by promoting our common values of tolerance, openness and inclusiveness.
Open Britain will campaign for the Government to provide the country with more than just a ‘bad deal or no deal’ offer to Parliament.
Open Britain does not believe the Government has a mandate for a hard Brexit and should not be given a blank cheque to pursue one. It is unacceptable for the Government to try and side-line our sovereign parliament. If the deal is not good enough, the Government should go back to the negotiating table. The Government, on their own, cannot take Britain out of the EU with no deal at all. We cannot be offered an ultimatum at the end of the Article 50 process between a bad deal and no deal – the hardest and most destructive Brexit of all. The country should be entitled, in some form, to make a real judgement about the deal on offer.
Making a positive case for Europe
As our relationship with Europe shifts, so too must our public discourse. ‘Europe’ has too often been seen as ‘over there’, not as a vital partner and extension of our home market that is critical for our national interest.
Europe is not perfect, but over decades its advocates have been far too reticent about making a positive case. The rancour of the referendum debate risks this becoming a permanent mind-set, but we must now champion the power, prosperity and influence it gives us.
We want to be part of a culture-shift that values and promotes a close relationship, which also means defending an open, inclusive society. We will make the positive case for immigration, while also arguing that the system as a whole can be fairer.
Growing the grassroots
Open Britain only exists thanks to the contribution and commitment of our supporter base across the country. Together we want to campaign on our values and priorities in every town and city across the country, working collaboratively with pro-European organisations of all shapes and sizes.
We will seek to maintain and grow our network of supporters, working not just with those who voted Remain but by starting open conversations with those who voted Leave. We believe Leave and Remain voters seek the same things – security, opportunity, a confident, outward-facing country – and we want to help find common ground across Britain.